Charles Amédée Philippe Van Loo

French 🇫🇷 1719 – 1795

Charles Amédée Philippe Van Loo was a French painter known for his allegorical scenes and portraits. He studied under his father, Jean-Baptiste van Loo, in Turin and Rome, where he won the Prix de Rome in 1738. Van Loo became a member of the Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture in 1747. His work includes the only known real-life portrait of the Marquis de Sade. He was also fascinated with optical themes, evident in his inventive compositions like ‘The Camera Obscura’.

Van Loo's interest in optical themes led him to create works that incorporated visual tricks, such as a portrait of Louis XV that became visible only when viewed through a faceted lens. This innovative approach to art reflects his fascination with contemporary scientific culture and optical devices.